IBM's Sequoia takes #Top500 supercomputer top spot

An IBM supercomputer installed at a U.S. laboratory has achieved the top speed rating in the world, ending Japan's one-year reign atop a ranking that is considered crucial for scientific research and national defense. IBM's Blue Gene/Q design took four of the top 10 spots in the latest Top500 list.

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  1. Prof Dongarra told the BBC it was unlikely that another manufacturer would overtake IBM in the next year. "Sequoia is very impressive," he said.
  2. Using specialty accelerator chips works well for some chores, said Ambuj Goyal, general manager of development and manufacturing for IBM's Systems and Technology group. But a more general-purpose architecture like Sequoia provides greater flexibility to do more jobs without extensively rewriting software, he said. --  Wall Street Journal
  3. Infographic - IBM's Supercomputing Chops
  4. Sequoia was built by IBM, a company whose BlueGene/Q supercomputers are now resurgent. Back in November, the last time the Top500 list was published, there weren’t any BlueGene systems in the top 10. Today, there are four, including an 8.2 petaflop system at Argonne National Laboratory and others in Italy and Germany. -- Wired

  5. What the Analysts said

  6. "IBM has been building systems like this for decades, and has some of the most advanced R&D in this area," said Rob Enderle.
  7. "Hats off to IBM for its success. Not only did the company's homegrown Blue Gene/Q architecture take four of the top 10 spots, but its iDataPlex system, powered by the Intel Xeon, also took the No. 4 spot," Charles King of Pund-IT.
  8. "HPC [high-performance computing] technical servers, especially supercomputers, have been closely linked, not only to scientific advances but also to industrial innovation and economic competitiveness. For this reason, nations and regions across the world are increasing their investments in supercomputing, even in today's challenging economic conditions," Earl Joseph, program vice president for technical computing at IDC.
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